Articles by Andres Fossas

The Basics of Mindfulness: Why Does it Work?

The Basics of Mindfulness: Why Does it Work?

Mindfulness is not a breathing exercise, nor an attention exercise, but rather it is an awareness exercise. And it works precisely in this way – by increasing the strength and sensitivity of our awareness. In this article, I’ll explain what that means. I’ll begin with a story. In a now famous social experiment (video below), Joshua Bell, one of the world’s greatest violinists, played classical music for 45 minutes during peak time commute at a busy tube station. There were no signs or other mentions of who the violin player was – he simply played...
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The Basics of Mindfulness: Where did it come from?

The Basics of Mindfulness: Where did it come from?

Mindfulness practices have become internationally popular in the past decade, but their roots reach 2,500 years into the past. While these practices have assumed different forms over the millennia, their purpose has remained constant: to end suffering. The current wave of mindfulness therapies, mindfulness coaching, mindfulness exercises, etc., owe most (or perhaps everything) to a stress-reduction program developed in the late 1970s by Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, a professor of medicine emeritus at the University of Massachusetts. The effectiveness of this...
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The Basics of Mindfulness Practice

The Basics of Mindfulness Practice

Wherever you happen to be sitting right now, take about a minute or two to notice the physical sensations of your body pressing against the seat/cushion/floor underneath you. If you’re standing, try to notice the physical sensations of your feet pressing against the floor. While you’re at it, see if you can identify the contours of your body touching the seat or floor by feeling the sensations that are present there – rather than by simply thinking about them. This exercise of attention is referred to as mindfulness and has become tremendously popular in recent...
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